Kitten Diarrhea Causes & Solutions

If your kitten has diarrhea, he should see the vet immediately.
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Diarrhea can be dangerous to kittens, just as it can be to human babies. There are different causes of diarrhea, and dehydration is a concern for small animals. If your kitten has diarrhea, take him to your veterinarian right away. The sooner he gets well, the better you'll both feel.


One possible cause of diarrhea in kittens is food. According to the Cat Health Guide, if you feed your kitten canned food and he develops diarrhea, you should try feeding him less of it. If you feed him dry food, check the expiration date on the package to find out whether it's expired.

Campylobacter Species

According to Mar Vista Vet, Campylobacter species cause diarrhea in cats, dogs, other animals and even humans. Kittens and puppies are especially vulnerable to these bacteria because of their immature immune systems and size. It is easier for them to get dehydrated because there is such a small amount of fluid in their bodies. Campylobacter cause bloody and mucous diarrhea, sometimes accompanied by a fever and vomiting. These bacteria are treated by the antibiotics erythromycin and tetracycline.


Salmonella is another bacterial cause of diarrhea, sometimes severe, in kittens. Kittens and puppies are especially susceptible because of their size and their young immune systems. It is treated with chloramphenicol, trimethoprim-sulfa, amoxicillin and fluoroquinolones.

Feline Coccidia

Another common cause of kitten diarrhea is Feline coccidia, which are protozoans. Sulfadimethoxime, amprolium and toltrazuril are typically used to treat them. It is common for cats to become reinfected after treatment, and even for these medications to not work at all. If that happens to your kitty, take him back to your vet to be treated again.

Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.

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